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Dr L Simmon
Dr L Simmon, Dog Veterinarian
Category: Dog
Satisfied Customers: 4869
Experience:  Veterinarian MVB MRCVS
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Has arthritis lost power in all legs recently - is pain free

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Has arthritis lost power in all legs recently - is pain free perky eats etc no other issues how can I help him plz
JA: I'll do all I can to help. When did the dog's leg start hurting?
Customer: back legs approx start of this yr purchased a harness 2 weeks ago and had him out issues started then as did weakness in front legs is taking medacam
JA: What's the dog's name?
Customer: zooty
JA: Is there anything else the Vet should know?
Customer: i rotate the dog regularly ensure he is clean etc
Customer: replied 11 days ago.
Hello
Hello, you are through to Dr Linda, a UK based vet.
I'm sorry to hear Zooty has this issue.What age and breed is he?
Had he had any tests such as xrays or a CT scan?
Customer: replied 11 days ago.
14 past German shepherd no tests vet said arthritis prescribed medacam thats it
Thank you for this additional information.
An older German Shepherd who has lost the use of his back legs most likely has a condition called Degenerative Myelopathy. It is a painless but progressive condition that causes paralysis.
This website explains it in more detail:https://vcahospitals.com/know-your-pet/degenerative-myelopathy-in-dogsIt is important to confirm with tests as there could be something else going on, such as a slipped disc in the back or progressed arthritis.We should aim for him to be and as slim as possible. Try walking him with a harness on soft surfaces if he is up for it.Regular hydrotherapy or physiotherapy are often beneficial.If paw dragging, it may be necessary to protect the paws with ‘boots’.Some owners will consider assisting their dog to walk by training them to use a mobility cart; these are commercially available from a number of companies.Dietary supplements, including vitamin E, omega-3-fatty acids, L-carnitine and gamma linolenic acid are worth trying but have not been proven to help.Controlling any arthritis pain with Meloxicam and opiods is important.
Customer: replied 11 days ago.
Vet states it’s definitely not DM it’s arthritis told me the dog wouldn’t last to the summer dog unable to walk at all and unable to use cart all I want to know is making him comfortable
Thank you.If the confirmed diagnosis is arthritis, this means he is not walking due to inflammation and discomfort.Meloxicam offers moderate pain relief so he almost certainly needs something stronger. We use Meloxicam alone for mild arthritis when a dog is showing minimal symptoms. At this stage, his arthritis sounds very advanced.I would be using Meloxicam as well as opioids and Gabapentin. I would also consider injectable medicine such as Cartrophen.On top of this, he should be on daily joint supplements to prevent further cartilage break down.Keep him slim and as mobile as possible. Some of the interventions discussed above, such as hydrotherapy, physiotherapy, massage and acupuncture can be very helpful.It is important to say that if we cannot control the symptoms and feel Zooty's quality of life is poor, we may need to consider having him put to sleep. As difficult a decision as this can be, it is one made to prevent suffering and allow a dog to pass away peacefully and with dignity.
Customer: replied 11 days ago.
Zooty on medacam and vet advised fish oil capsules thank you for advice I am fully aware he will be put to sleep my dilemma is when
I understand, it can be such a difficult call to make.I find this questionnaire really useful to provide an objective viewpoint:https://journeyspet.com/pet-quality-of-life-scale-calculator/You can do it every week or so, to see how things compare. It can can be useful to do it with information from 12 months ago, to see how things have changed for Zooty.
Customer: replied 11 days ago.
Thank you
Customer: replied 11 days ago.
Current scale is 43
Ok, good.It is worth repeating this every so often and perhaps completing it once with the vet when in a consult.Wishing him all the very best.
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